Bodybuilding Diet And Supplements As The Culprits
If weight training itself doesnt cause acne, then how can we explain increased acne in bodybuilders? I think it comes down to diet and supplements.
In my previous post about whey protein I looked at studies on protein powders. Compared to weight training alone or carbohydrate supplements protein powders increase both acute and resting IGF-1 levels. Whey protein is derived from milk, a food notorious for causing acne.
Much like carbohydrates, protein triggers insulin release from the pancreas. When it comes to acne, insulin is just as bad as IGF-1 as they both stimulate sebum production and increase sensitivity of the skin to androgens. These hormones are cited as the reasons why sugar and simple carbohydrates trigger acne is some people.
Given all this I can definitely see how taking protein powders increases the risk of acne but dairy and soy-based protein powders are especially bad for acne.
What Supplements Do I Need To Take
No one can answer that aside from your doctor. To learn more about the various supplements that doctors commonly recommend, check out this article.
If you are taking creatine to help you build muscle and get fit, dont forget to pair your supplement regiment with a solid fitness program. We can help! Check out our PRO Plan today to see how we can motivate you to stay focused on your long-term goals.
What Else Is In Your Supplement
Unfortunately, supplements arent controlled or regulated by the Food and Drug Administration as strictly as medications are, so we often dont know exactly what they contain. This often makes it easier for supplements to cause harmful side effects that are challenging to track down due to hard-to-identify ingredients.
When patients who are taking workout supplements come see me, I do a search of pharmacology references and medical literature to look for side effects other people may have experienced as a result of that specific supplement. For example, I had one patient who was experiencing vasospasms, a sudden contraction of the blood vessels that can reduce blood flow. As we talked about what medications and supplements the patient was taking, to our surprise we found that the patient was taking a number of supplements that are marketed as being heart healthy, but can also cause vasospasms. By eliminating the supplements that could lead to vasospasm, we were able to improve the patients symptoms.
Ive seen patients who have noticed many symptoms, whether heart-related or affecting other areas of the body, that ended up being related to their intake of workout supplements, such as:
- High blood pressure
- Spontaneous coronary artery dissection , a tear in the wall of an artery
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Simple Sugars And Pre
Aside from dairy products, studies have also linked sugars, simple carbohydrates and other high GI foods to acne. Glycemic index measures how quickly a food increases blood sugar levels. Sugars and simple carbohydrates that are digested in a snap make their way into the bloodstream within minutes of digestion and thus score high on GI. Complex carbohydrates have much gentler impact on blood sugar levels.
Foods with high GI often stimulate higher insulin and IGF-1 release than low GI foods, and thats why they cause acne in some people.
Some bodybuilders take pre- and post-workout drinks that are high in simple sugars. The rationale is that this increases insulin and IGF-1 levels and helps to drive more protein into the muscles. As weve covered many times already these same hormones also lead to acne.
Muscle building shakes are yet another possible cause for acne. They are often high in calories, protein and simple carbohydrates, and thats 3 strikes for the skin.
Does Total War Pre Workout Cause Acne
Redcon1s Total War Pre Workout is one of the strongest pre workout supplements on the market.
A single dose provides a whopping 320mg of caffeine!
To give you some perspective, a cup of coffee contains just under 100mg of caffeine. So a serving of Total War contains more caffeine than 3 cups of coffee.
Also, Total War contains 2 artificial sweeteners sucralose and acesulfame K.
And therefore, I would stay well clear if youre type of person who gets acne.
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Wear Clean Workout Clothes
Clean clothing is one of the biggest factors you can control in preventing acne.
Put on a fresh set of workout clothes before you exercise, rather than using the same ones from earlier that week before you got to another laundry day. Acne is rooted in bacteria, so limit the bacteria you let sit on your skin by washing your gym clothes regularly and wearing a fresh outfit each time.
Acne Cannot Be Directly Linked To Pre
Does lit pre workout cause acne. Beta-alanine is the biggest culprit as it is found in many pre-workout products despite it having no purpose in a pre-workout formula in our opinion more on that below. Pre-workout side effects can be common so weve put together a guide on how to deal with them and get the best out of your supplement. Keep your hands away from your face.
Its not your fault. All that makeup and goo in result from your activities throughout the day will eventually build up block your pores and prevent your skin from breathing. Some of the side effects it can cause include anxiety jitters inability to focus and migraines.
The good news is that acne is not your fault. HOWEVER lifting weights does not neccessarily mean you will get acne. This is because hormonal acne typically takes the form of cystic bumps.
If you are acne prone then there is a very good chance it will make it worse but many people have the genetics and skin type that will never break out with acne no matter what they do. Not only does it help reduce stress it also improves blood flow and helps guarantee that your body gives your skin the resources it needs to stay healthy. Yes thats where acne steps in.
IF youre looking for a pre-workout without DAA Id highly recommend Volatile by Fahrenheit Nutrition. As we touched upon above the exact cause of Acne remains something of a. The key is to maintain proper hygiene before during and after your workouts.
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How To Avoid Lifting
Learning how to avoid acne is a huge topic, and it would take a whole other blog post to explain all the best ways to stop it.
This being said, I want to set you on the right path to stopping acne so you can keep lifting weights happily.
My two most important tips are to remember to wash your face and try to not touch your face throughout the day.
Touching your face brings oil and dirt from whatever you were touching to your skin, and this isnt a good thing. Drink a good amount of water, around 8 cups a day, so you can avoid becoming dehydrated.
Nobody knows the true cause of acne or an exact way to cure/stop it. The best that you can do is keep your body and skin healthy and clean.
May Trigger Mild Reactions
Two additional ingredients in many pre-workout supplements are beta alanine and niacin .
Beta alanine is an amino acid that reduces acidity in your muscles during exercise, which may help you sustain your workout for slightly longer.
Dosed at 46 grams per day, it has been shown to increase exercise performance and reduce fatigue in high-intensity exercises lasting 14 minutes .
Yet, this ingredient may cause paresthesia, a tingling sensation in your hands and feet. While its a harmless nervous system reaction, some people may find it uncomfortable .
Another ingredient with mild downsides is niacin, which is included in many pre-workout supplements for its skin-flushing effects. In high doses of 500 mg or more, it can trigger a blood rush to the surface of your skin, resulting in red patches .
While niacin also plays an important role in energy metabolism, supplementing with it likely doesnt offer additional benefits if you consume a well-balanced diet .
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Increase In Dht Levels
The purpose of creatine supplementation is to boost your testosterone levels.
This allows you to lift slightly heavier weights or get that extra rep in during your workout.
A byproduct of testosterone is DHT, which has been proven to be boosted when additional creatine is added into a persons system.
Higher levels of DHT have been linked to hair loss in men and can also result in increased acne.
The reason being is that DHT can bind itself to androgen receptors on the oil glands which then stimulates extra oil production.
When the glands are overstimulated, skin cells cannot shed properly, trapping the sebum underneath and resulting in inflammation over time.
Since elevated DHT levels stimulate the sebaceous glands, it makes sense for some people to see greater acne.
However, this appears to be more prevalent in individuals who already have a history of acne.
Does Bcaa Make You Gain Weight
Branched-chain amino acids may help prevent weight gain and enhance fat loss. In fact, observational studies report that those consuming an average of 15 grams of BCAAs from their diet each day may have up to 30% lower risk of becoming overweight or obese than those consuming an average of 12 grams per day .
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Does Increased Testosterone Levels Cause Acne
Yes, higher testosterone does cause acne in about 50% of subjects. However, the natural increases in testosterone that come from weight training and bodybuilding are not significant enough by themselves to cause acne. Acne from increased testosterone is almost always a result of testosterone supplementation.
Why Might Creatine Cause Acne
While more research is necessary to prove a definitive link between creatine and acne, anecdotal evidence suggests some people have acne breakouts more often when they take supplements.
One hypothesis for why this could happen is due to how creatine supplementation increases the hormone known as dihydrotestosterone, also known as DHT.
Research indicates that those who take creatine supplements see an increase as high as 50 percent in their DHT levels.
Thats a major shift in your natural hormone levels. As a result, individuals who are naturally prone to hormone-driven acne may see breakouts more often when taking creatine.
Additionally, greater levels of acne have been found in individuals who take more than the recommended amount of creatine daily.
Most guidelines suggest taking between three and five grams of creatine supplementation daily, but some people will take more in the hope of seeing greater gains.
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Bodybuilders Guide To Acne
Some bodybuilders face a frustrating dilemma. Going to the gym messes up their skin, something known as bodybuilding acne. Unfortunately for acne-prone people bodybuilding and clear skin can be inherently opposing goals. The more gains you make on one front the more you slip back on the other.
In this post Ill explain the surprising truth of why bodybuilding causes acne. Well also cover some tips on how to maximize your gains without wrecking your face.
Lets start by looking at the most common explanation for bodybuilding acne, increased testosterone levels as a result of weight lifting.
Determine Its Impact On You How Much Do You Care
For some, acne wont be the end of the world, and this wont be a big deal for them. They can keep training as they are and pursue the goals that are more important than the appearance of their complexion.
For others, the appearance of acne may be such a big deal that it completely outweighs the benefits of bodybuilding or lifting for them. By now, hopefully you understand that the sport itself is not the cause of the problem, and you dont need to throw away your dreams or sacrifice doing what you love just because of your skin.
Try a few of my recommendations below.
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Protein Powder And Dairy
Like I said before, many people change their diets after they start lifting weights. This is a good thing if you do it right, but the fact is that many people are doing it wrong.
Lifters eat a lot of food in general, and this includes protein and carbohydrates. These things alone wont cause acne, but the lack of other food types will.
If you want to know the best foods to eat for lifters check out this article I wrote a while back.
Lots of people seem to neglect important foods like fruits and vegetables, which are both vital to keeping your skin clear and healthy.
Many lifters also drink a whole lot of milk, and some people seem to think this aids in the development of acne.
Why Does Anyone Get Acne Anyway
Acne is something that affects everybody, not just lifters. Although we dont know all the direct causes of acne, we definitely know the basics.
Put simply, acne happens when the pores in your skin get clogged by oil and dirt. After theyre clogged, bacteria starts to grow in there if your pores arent properly cleaned out. This can affect lifters more than other people in some cases, due to them sweating more often.
The reasons for these pores being clogged are things like excessive sweating, poor skincare, and imbalances with your hormones. Along with this, these different causes result in different types of acne.
The most common types are whiteheads and blackheads, which are mostly caused by oil and are easier to get rid of.
A more serious type of acne is called cystic acne. Doctors think this type is mostly caused by hormones, but theyre still researching the main causes. Cystic acne is bigger, and redder, and very difficult to get rid of.
No matter which type of acne you get, there should be a way for you to get clear skin.
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Shower As Soon As You Can After A Workout
Remember that the sweat compounds that attract acne-causing bacteria will still sit there even after the sweat dries, so shower as soon as you can after your workout.
It can be easy to head home, sit down to eat, and start doing something else before we get around to showering. Commit to washing off as quickly as you can after a workout and see what kind of an impact it has on your complexion over a few weeks.
What Is Creatine
Creatine is a naturally-occurring substance in your muscles that allows you to produce energy during high-intensity workouts.
However, some people take creatine supplements to improve bodily performance and build up muscle mass.
Over time, this can lead to greater gains in terms of lean muscle growth.
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Why Does My Pre
It depends on the formula, but many have vasodilator compounds in them, or ingredients that cause your blood vessels to expand, explains Lowery. This dilates, among others, the blood vessels in your head, which can cause a headache.
The specific vasodilator is typically the amino acid arginine, which increases nitric oxide in the body. The idea behind including this is that at rest, a large part of your vascular beds are closed. If you open them up, in theory, you could take in nutrients or remove waste products better because you have more blood circulating. Some pre-workouts claim this may actually have anabolic effects and can cause muscle growth. But, if you keep getting headaches, see your doctor and consider switching to a supp that doesnt have this ingredient.
Take A Fish Oil Supplement
Fish Oil supplements are rich in omega 3 fats that offer a wide range of health benefits.
But nowadays, far too many people are consuming too much omega 6 and too little omega 3.
Fish Oils are rich in EPA and DHA. These are fatty acids which help reduce inflammation a major player in acne.
In a 10-week study, 45 acne patients were given supplements that contained either omega 3, linoleic acid, or a placebo.
The results showed that those who took the omega 3 had significantly reduced acne lesions compared to the placebo group.
Interestingly, those who took the linoleic acid supplements had improved acne too.
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Pre Workout Is Usually High In Artificial Sweeteners
What do the following popular pre workouts have in common?
- MuscleTech Vapor X5
- Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard Pre Workout
Answer: Theyre full of artificial sweeteners.
Why could this be problematic for acne sufferers?
Well, according to research, many different artificial sweeteners increase insulin levels and insulin resistance just like sugar does.
In one study, 15 participants took either 200mg of sucralose or a placebo each day for 4 weeks.
By the end of the study, those in the sucralose group were more insulin resistant than those in the placebo group.
In another study, those who consumed aspartame with a meal had significantly higher insulin levels than those who consumed a natural sweetener with a meal.
Unfortunately for acne sufferers, research suggests that insulin resistance may play a key role in acne development.
Can Pre Workout Supplements Cause Acne
I just started taking cullucor C4 at around the beginning of January, and I’ve been noticing huge amounts of breakouts. I had very bad skin last year but went to the dermatologist, went on medicine and it went away for about a year up until now. This PWO is the first thing I thought of when I was trying to think of why these sudden break outs are happening because I thought of the caffeine and other stimulants and the old saying that the caffeine in soda causes acne. I’m not in any way saying I know anything about the field of dermatology but I’d like some of your guys’ knowledge on it. thanks
Last edited by Stinkertonn 01-22-2013 at 02:28 PM.
I’m not totally sure, but I doubt it is due to C4.
Originally Posted by llahhsojI’m not totally sure, but I doubt it is due to C4. It just seems like the spike in acne has been related to the C4. Maybe the stims?
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Originally Posted by StinkertonnIt just seems like the spike in acne has been related to the C4. Maybe the stims? I don’t really know much about this topic to be honest. Just curious, How old are you?
Last edited by llahhsoj 01-22-2013 at 06:10 PM.
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